Anderson: Time was right for a wolf hunt

  • Article by: DENNIS ANDERSON , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 1, 2012 - 7:24 PM

Disparate parties have a range of opinions on the necessity and propriety of the wolf hunt - but let's hope the debate sticks to the facts.

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steelyourfasDec. 1, 12 6:11 PM

Right after coming off the endangered species list? ya... perfect timing

normmackeyDec. 1, 12 6:22 PM

Disgusting that people are hunting these few thousand big shy dogs for sport and pleasure. We don’t usually kill dogs in the US for pleasure and have the state take a cut of the dogfighting profits because we “have to” to pay for managing t he 70-80 million domesticated ones, why tolerate it being done to these canines, with double-digit percent larger brains and some abilities to live free without human interference, merely to provide someone with a pelt or a rug symbolizing the grief and loss suffered by the other members of the pack? This has to be the epitome of bad taste - I wouldn't confront the killer, but if he should complain about acts of alleged dogfighters or similar things I would not be able resist pointing out that they had done worse, were displaying the fact, and ask them how the family of wolves are currently doing without the "trophy" that once helped provide the others with food, protection, and companionship. The USA has some 70-80 million domesticated wolves. The mere handful of wild wolves could very well be treated much as the other dogs are, even though the wolves have brains that are double-digit percentages larger and have a few instincts needed to live in the wild, which people removed to fill those roles themselves. At least with something near the same consideration, not a resource to be "harvested", with enough respect as the animal we chose to turn into the one we trust with our children

kevmeyerDec. 1, 12 6:56 PM

Is this an editorial? If not it should be because Dennis your are a hunter and your are biased... Stick to the facts? Facts from an agency that benefits from hunting. I would say this is a big conflict of interest and nobody seems to question it!

jmo23232323Dec. 1, 12 7:33 PM

Have any of the above people posting seen a wolf with mange??? I enjoy and love having wolves around but they have become over populated and need to be managed:/

cjvirnigDec. 1, 12 9:23 PM

I am someone who is fiercely against a wolf hunt. It doesn't bother me at all that large numbers of wolves die violent long as those deaths are natural. Despite Mr. Anderson's assertion that the facts strongly support the necessity of a wolf hunt, he failed to mention the most important fact of all. Namely, from 1998-2008 (the date of them most recent comprehensive wolf census), the overall population of the gray wolf remained static. As Mr. Anderson briefly alludes to in this article, natural death rates amongst wolves are extremely high. 50% of all wolf pups do not live past 6 months. In addition, large numbers of adult wolves die from disease and territorial fighting. Those of us who feel the implementation of a wolf hunt is premature would like to wait until next year when the next full wolf survey numbers are released. If the population has once again remained static from 2008, it would seem as if there is very little risk of overpopulation because that would indicate 15 years of static numbers. Moreover, the Minnesota DNR has not even established a maximum population figure for the gray wolf, further indicating a lack of certainty as to what the ideal population should be. This issue is far more complicated than hunting enthusiasts make it seem.

xyzzy72Dec. 1, 1210:31 PM

Thank you Dennis for a beautifully written and educational article.

aweshucksDec. 1, 1210:41 PM

Mr. Anderson writes that the wolf hunt has not harvested large enough numbers of wolves but then posits that the solution to this problem is a wolf hunt. For someone casting aspersions about naivete, his logic is pedestrian at best. He also plays games with the definitions of wolves: note that he uses the definition "wintering wolves" in one allusion then "statewide wolf count" in another. That doesn't pass the smell test.

Jefferson09Dec. 2, 1212:23 AM

Seems to me there is a bit of a disconnect in your viewpoints Mr. Anderson. A population of some 3,000 wolves being too compared to millions of humans inhabiting the state. And I'd say the net sum of negative impacts, of the wolf numbers, virtually pales in comparison to that resulting from human existence. Wonder what it will take to bring our species back into balance with our finite environment?!?

melabill2Dec. 2, 1212:47 AM

So sad to see all of the people posting comments on this article are so negative about hunting the wolf without any regard to all of the scientific data that is available about the negative impact of not controlling the population. So far there has been no mention of the impact on the states farmers livestock in the northern part of the state. Many head of livestock is lost to wolves when the population is allowed to increase without some means of control, i.e., hunting. Hunting by only the farmers involved will not have a significant impact on the overall numbers. And to the commenter that called them just big dogs, I wonder if he has ever seen an animal that has been attacked by a wolf and seen how that animal has been torn apart. NO, I hope that the legislature will allow the DNR to continue the wolf hunt next year. I believe that the maximum number of wolves was set by the DNR years ago and the number of wolves in the state is approximately double that amount, if not higher. Please let the wolf hunt continue.

xyzlatDec. 2, 12 5:10 AM

Hunters seem to prefer the word "harvest" when they refer to the killing of wolves and other species. Wolves are sentient, social beings, not corn or oats or soybeans. I would still like to see an expose on exactly who and how this wolf hunting and trapping got approved. I think somebody pulled a fast one.


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